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Taking Your Pets On Holiday
Holidaying With Your Pets

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Many people consider their pets as part of the family. Often the cost of kennelling their pets can be very expensive, especially if their holiday is for more than a week. So it is no surprise that there is a growing 'holidaying with pets' market for those planning their vacation, especially since it also includes taking their pet.

The tourism market to cater for this market is slowly growing, with council/shires, some national parks/reserves, and accommodation providers coming on board to cater for travellers taking a holiday with their pets.

When we talk about holidaying with your pets, this usually refers to dogs, although there are some services that cater for horses and cats.
 

Following is some information and advice on where to seek information about pet friendly destinations, accommodation and services.

Additional resources and links can be found by following are links.

Also check out our ‘Pet Accommodation’ for the relevant state/territory.

It is also important to note that information provided may change, without our knowledge. It is always wise to visit the website of the listed services or contact them direct to confirm specific details. If you know of any changes, just drop us a line, so that we can update the details for other travelling with their pets.

National - Pet Information

Throughout Australia, you must have your dog under effective control at all time when in public places. It must wear a collar and should have an identification tag. Even more important, it must be under control on a leash (except in approved off leash areas). Even the smallest dogs must be under control, as some people are afraid of dogs, and children are not often familiar with the protocols of facing a new dog for the first time.

For those planning to take their pets on holiday in Australia, the internet makes it easier these days to do some research. One of the first places to visit online is the local government and local council website for your destinations. Most will have some information on where you can take your dogs on leash and off leash in their shire, with the range of facilities and venues for pets varying from shire to shire, some being better than others. The next online resource should be the local tourism visitor centre. If the council or tourism centre website does not have information, email them. The more people that email the councils and visitor centre enquiring about dog friendly information, the easier it will be in the future for those travelling on holiday with their pets. After all, we are a growing group of tourists with economic clout.

Whilst most national parks and reserves around Australia may not permit dogs, there are some exceptions, where they may permit dogs within a certain sub area of the park/reserve and under certain conditions. You will need to query the government body that manages the national parks within each state/territory - searching their websites is usually the best starting point. The one exception is that visually impaired people with guide dogs can take their dogs into these parks/reserves.

Of course, one of the important aspects of those holidaying with their pets, is that they should ensure their dogs are socialised and trained so they are not aggressive and do not cause public annoyance by continually barking. You should also pick up after your dog when it defecates in public places, and dispose of it in the appropriate manner. One of the reasons often given by accommodation providers and the like for not accepting pets, is due to bad experience by previous pet owners.

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New South Wales - Pet Information

More information to come...
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Northern Territory - Pet Information

Pet Friendly Darwin
Visitors to Darwin will find that most of Darwin's council parks, reserves and beaches are 'off-lead dog exercise areas', as long as the dogs are supervised and under effective control. Dogs, however, are banned at East Point Reserve, in the Mall and at markets such as the Mindil, Rapid Creek, Parap and Nightcliff Markets.

For more information, visit the City of Darwin website, follow the Animals and Pets > Dogs > Off-Leash Dog Parks.
Pet Friendly Alice Springs
Visitors to Alice Springs can take their dogs to a number of parks managed by the council, with a number of parks providing doggie bags on site to pick up after your dog, although you should always bring your own, just in case the dispensers have run out. There are also a number of places along the Todd River, that are away from the public that can be great fun for you and your dogs, especially if there is water in the Todd River. Another popular location for dog owners is the Ilparpa Claypans. Whilst dogs and pets are not permitted in the national parks, there are a couple of exceptions including sections of the Owen Springs Reserve.
Northern Territory National Parks
The best place to find out if there is any parks or reserves where you can take your dogs, is the NRETAS website. Check out their section on 'Pets in Parks'.

Although they say that pets are generally not permitted in Northern Territory Parks and Reserves, they go on to list the exceptions. If you are going to one of the listed exceptions, look up the full information for that park/reserve on the NRETAS website. If there is no mention of dog areas detailed on the web page, you may need to download the fact sheet, where you may find additional information in regards to dog friendly areas. Some of the listed exceptions may not refer to the entire park/reserve, and may only refer to a section within the park/reserve, such as the Owen Springs Reserve near Alice Springs.
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Queensland - Pet Information

Pet Friendly Queensland Councils Shires
Check out the local government council website for your destinations in Queensland. Most will have some information on where you can take your dogs on leash and off leash in their shire. In addition you can check out the website of the local tourism visitor centre. If the council or tourism centre website does not have information, email them. The more people that email the councils and visitor centre enquiring about dog friendly information, the easier it will be in the future for those travelling on holiday with their pets.

Following are some council sites with information on pet friendly leash and off-leash areas. If the link provided does not take you to the relevant section within the council site, just use the search box within the website to look for where the information on dog leash and off-leash areas are.

Brisbane City Council - Dog parks and Favourite dog parks
Cairns Regional Council - Responsible dog and cat ownership
City of Ipswich - Active pets active owners
Gold Coast City Council - Dogs
Redland City Council - Dog off-leash areas
Sunshine Coast Council - Keeping and exercising dogs
Queensland National Parks & Reserves
The best place to find out if there is any parks or reserves where you can take your dogs, is the Queensland Government National Parks, Marine Parks and Forests website.

Whilst most parks/reserves may not allow dogs, you need to query the specific park/reserve, as they may offer exceptions where you may be able to take your dog within a certain area under certain conditions. If there is no mention actually detailed on the web page, check out the fact sheet, to see if there is any other additional information. Some of the listed exceptions may not refer to the entire park/reserve, and may only refer to a section within the park/reserve.
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South Australia - Pet Information

More information to come...
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Tasmania - Pet Information

More information to come...
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Victoria - Pet Information

Pet Friendly Victoria Councils Shires
Check out the local government council website for your destinations in Victoria. Most will have some information on where you can take your dogs on leash and off leash in their shire. In addition you can check out the website of the local tourism visitor centre. If the council or tourism centre website does not have information, email them. The more people that email the councils and visitor centre enquiring about dog friendly information, the easier it will be in the future for those travelling on holiday with their pets.

Following are some council sites with information on pet friendly leash and off-leash areas. If the link provided does not take you to the relevant section within the council site, just use the search box within the website to look for where the information on dog leash and off-leash areas are.

City of Melbourne - Walking your dog
City of Port Phillip - Dogs on Beaches
Surf Coast Shire - Great Ocean Road Pet Friendly Guide (PDF) and
Dog Regulations on the Surf Coast
Victoria National Parks & Reserves
The best place to find out if there is any parks or reserves where you can take your dogs, is the Victoria Government Parks Victoria website.

Parks Victoria appears to be operate one of the most dog friendly range of national parks and reserves. There is a great document 'Walking your Dog in Victoria's Parks' listing 20 parks where you can walk your dog (some conditions apply).

Whilst most parks/reserves may not allow dogs, you need to query the specific park/reserve, as they may offer exceptions where you may be able to take your dog within a certain area under certain conditions. If there is no mention actually detailed on the web page, check out the fact sheet, to see if there is any other additional information. Some of the listed exceptions may not refer to the entire park/reserve, and may only refer to a section within the park/reserve.

Of course you will need to confirm with Parks Victoria, before visiting parks and reserves with your dog, to find out if there are any changes to off-lead areas or dog exclusion zones and if camping with dogs is allowed.
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Western Australia - Pet Information

Pet Friendly Western Australia Councils Shires
Check out the local government council website for your destinations in Western Australia. Most will have some information on where you can take your dogs on leash and off leash in their shire. In addition you can check out the website of the local tourism visitor centre. If the council or tourism centre website does not have information, email them. The more people that email the councils and visitor centre enquiring about dog friendly information, the easier it will be in the future for those travelling on holiday with their pets.

Following are some council sites with information on pet friendly leash and off-leash areas. If the link provided does not take you to the relevant section within the council site, just use the search box within the website to look for where the information on dog leash and off-leash areas are.

City of Busselton - Dog Exercise Areas
City of Rockingham - Dog beach exercise areas
City of South Perth - Dogs off-leash reserves
Shire of Broome - Dog Control / Dog Exercise Areas
Shire of Esperance - Animal Exercise Areas
Shire of Mundaring - All About Dogs
Western Australia National Parks & Reserves
The best place to find out if there is any parks or reserves where you can take your dogs, is the WA Government Parks and Recreation Park Finder.

DEC has a policy that dogs are not permitted in most national parks, conservation parks, nature reserves, marine parks and marine nature reserves, although dogs are allowed to travel in boats in marine parks and marine management areas. Places where dogs are allowed in parks and reserves will be signposted and dogs will need to be kept on a lead.

There is some information on the DEC website for Pets in Parks and Where you can take your dog.
 
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